How to be mindful at work
Mindfulness is not a benefit experienced by just employees. Management and leadership also benefit from building a meditation practice because it helps them to develop a greater sense of awareness, clarity, and compassion, and they in turn lead their company or team with those qualities. Not only that, but they also tend to see an upturn in productivity and a downturn in stress-related illnesses. In short, everyone's a winner when the work culture embraces and incorporates mindfulness.
Whether you are an employer or employee, meditating at work can be a great way to ground yourself and get a short, beneficial break in the middle of a chaotic workday. View it as an opportunity to press the reset button. And if you don’t feel like meditating, there are plenty of other ways to practice mindfulness at work. What follows are some ideas for injecting mindful moments into your workday — see which ones work best for you!
Benefits of mindfulness in the workplace
For many people, the workday is spent dealing with constant deadlines, distractions, and other stressors all competing for attention at the exact same time — which is why so many inevitably resort to multitasking and operate much of the day on autopilot. But multitasking isn’t all it’s cracked up to be. In fact, a study from Ohio State University found that when students multitasked, they felt more productive — but in reality, they were actually less productive.
And that’s where being mindful at work — being fully present and consciously focused on the task at hand, free from distractions or judgment, and with a soft and open mind — can be hugely beneficial and transformative. By training ourselves to be more present at work through mindfulness, we learn to take care of one thing at a time. Moving forward task by task allows us to create opportunities to be more attentive, aware, and productive and less reactive, overwhelmed, and on autopilot.
What’s more, research shows that mindfulness has a variety of benefits — many of which can positively impact an individual’s job performance. For example, separate studies from Northeastern University found that three weeks of Headspace increased compassion by 23% and reduced aggression by 57%. Another study found that 10 days of Headspace reduced stress by 14%. And a 2018 study published in the American Journal of Medicine found that nurses who used Headspace for 30 days had significant improvements in job satisfaction.
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